National Handwashing Awareness Week is observed during the first week of December. This event is organized every year to bring to light the importance of personal hygiene. The COVID-19 pandemic has made us realize how crucial it is to keep ourselves sanitized.
It is essential to wash our hands to stop the spread of germs thus preventing respiratory infections such as cold and flu.
Why is this day important?
Take a look at the following facts that show us why we should regularly wash and dry our hands the right way:
-Touching the face with unclean hands can spread infections such as flu, cold, and pneumonia
-About 80% of communicable diseases can spread through touching
-Every time a flush is used, bacteria is spread up to 6 square meters; most sinks in public bathrooms are 90% covered in these bacteria
-Most of the bacteria on our hands are located under our fingernails
-Reusable cloth towels are known to have bacteria in their fibres
-Washing hands every couple of hours has been known to reduce rates of diarrhoea by 40%
-People who wash their hands at regular intervals have been known to take 24% fewer sick days for respiratory diseases than those who do not
The 8-step handwashing method
Here is a quick look at the right way to wash your hands:
1.Wet your hands with water
2.Use soap to cover all your hand surfaces
3.Rub your palms against each other
4.Interlace your fingers to cover every spot
5.Clench each thumb with the other hand’s palm and rotate to clean them
6.Rinse your hands with water and wash off the soap and germs
7.Take a disposable towel to dry your hands
8.Use the same towel to turn off the faucet
This year, the theme of National Handwashing Awareness Week is ‘Hand Hygiene for All’. This theme aims to create an awareness of the importance of making soap and water available in all public places and healthcare facilities. Considering that we are in the midst of a pandemic, let us all take efforts towards hand hygiene so that we may support our healthcare professionals working to save lives.